Feb. 15, 2014
|Will Munro delivers game's last pitch
|Taylor Ward hit game-winning RBI
By: Matt Burkholder
IRVINE, Calif. - Less than 24 hours out from a thrilling 10 inning Friday night win, Fresno State played bonus baseball with UC Irvine once again Saturday afternoon at Cicerone Field. Behind five strong innings of work to close the game, Bulldog right-hander William Munro provided the 'Dogs the arm they needed to come out victorious 8-7 in a 13 inning, three hour, fifty-five minute marathon.
"What a grind," said head coach Mike Batesole. "If you respect Division I baseball and been in the west, to beat a Mike Gillespie team in their ballpark is super difficult. Just look at their record. You beat them on the road in their ballpark, that's about as tough a win to get."
Munro (1-0) struck out four and allowed three hits in five innings of relief work. The junior pitcher mowed through the lineup during the first three innings he was in relief, going three-up, three-down in the ninth, 10th and 11th innings.
In the top of 12th inning, Viers led-off with a double and Brody Russell came up big for the second consecutive game by knocking home Viers from second base with a bloop single over the infield into shallow left field. The RBI put the 'Dogs on top 7-6, but the Anteaters would have an answer in the bottom half to keep the marathon ticking.
Munro walked the lead-off hitter, Jerry McClanahan, in the bottom of the 12th and following a sacrifice bunt and back-to-back singles, the game was knotted back at 7-7.
In the next frame, Taylor Tempel smacked a double to left-center to start the 13th inning and the see-saw affair kept growing. Jordan Luplow squared down a textbook sacrifice bunt down the first base line to advance Temple, and then Woodward grounded out to allow Temple to reach third. With two outs Ward would register what would turn out to be the games-winning RBI.
The Bulldogs scored their first six runs of the game with two outs on the board and would register the seventh with the game-winning run.
Munro would get a second chance to seal the game in the 13th as Batesole stuck with the right-hander. Chris Rabago countered the 'Dogs lead-off hit from the top half with one of their own, but that would be Munro's third and last hit he would allow Saturday. Munro seized the opportunity and retired the next three, leaving Rabago stranded at third to seal the game for the Bulldogs.
"We knew as a team we were going to get it done," said Munro. "It was just a matter of how many innings and who had to make the next big play."
Unlike the night before, the bats erupted early Saturday, giving the 'Dogs two runs in the opening frame. Following UCI starting pitcher Elliot Surrey retiring the first two Bulldogs, the 'Dogs sparked a two out rally, that became the theme of the game, with two RBI singles to match the run total from a night ago in the first inning.
Starter Blake Quinn surrendered four runs in the fourth to allow the first runs of the series for UC Irvine and its first lead after 15 innings of baseball.
Fresno State will look for the sweep Sunday at 1 p.m. as freshman Jimmy Lambert is set to take on Evan Brock in the series finale.
"Catch the Wave" - 2014 Fresno State baseball season tickets are now on sale and can be ordered online at gobulldogs.com or over the phone at 559-278-DOGS (3647). The official home of the Fresno State Bulldogs is 940 AM ESPN Radio.
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